With Oscar in Paris, tecorded Live at the Salle Pleyel, jazz fans can bask in the glory of an international jazz collaboration of the highest order at the European venue that is considered to be one of the best in the world.
Oscar Peterson has had an amazing career which started at the age of 6 with classical training. By age 24, he found himself playing in front of an entranced sold out crowd at Carnegie Hall. Inspired initially by the piano work of Nat "King" Cole, Peterson subsequently revealed the influence of Art Tatum and sometimes Erroll Garner or Bill Evans, while keeping his music instantly identifiable. What makes a live set by Oscar Peterson truly amazing is his unfailing commitment to swinging, keeping the music instantly compelling. Oscar in Paris continues this tradition—his mature soloing, especially on the double-up tempo in "Tranquille" or the locked chord phases in "Kelly's Blues" are as accomplished, if not more so, than anything he has done in his long career.
Oscar in Paris: Recorded Live at the Salle Pleyel was recorded live June of 1996 at what many musicians consider the best concert hall in the world. The program on this double disc is typical of many latter-day Peterson performances, with several of his original compositions intertwined with evergreen standards. The selections on the album include originals such as "Love Ballade" and "Nighttime," as well as inspired classics such as "Sweet Georgia Brown" and "Falling in Love."
The band for this gig was nothing less than stupendous, with a completely international cast. Peterson, who hails from Canada, is joined by the British drummer Martin Drew. On guitar is Lorne Lofsky, Oscar's protégé, and a frequent member of his touring groups. On bass is Nielson Henning Orsted Pedersen from Denmark, who, after playing with Oscar since 1971, has built an incredible rapport with him.